Youngsters still waiting for cash to meet festival costs

PUBLISHED: 12:00 02 August 2007 | UPDATED: 15:12 12 May 2010

BUNTINGFORD Youth Council is still waiting for £5,500 it was awarded by Hertfordshire County Council s Big Spend. The youngsters were told at the end of May they would receive the cash to pay for a summer music festival – but are yet to receive a penny. B

BUNTINGFORD Youth Council is still waiting for £5,500 it was awarded by Hertfordshire County Council's Big Spend.

The youngsters were told at the end of May they would receive the cash to pay for a summer music festival - but are yet to receive a penny.

Buntingford town clerk Jill Jones said: "We were delighted when we were told about the money - and we'll be even more delighted when we get it."

The youth council's bid was one of the projects to be given the award.

But the town council is now struggling to pay the bills from the music festival.

Mrs Jones said: "I have been in touch with the county council and it's promised to send us the money.

"It blamed the delay on the large number of awards it is sending out."

As part of The Big Spend, the county council asked youngsters to come up with ideas for youth projects for a share of more than £1 million in youth opportunity and youth capital funds.

At the time of the request from County Hall, Cllr David Lloyd, executive member for education, said: "The Big Spend is unique because it is completely run by young people.

"They make the bids and choose which should be funded. It's all down to them to decide what they need.

"It's a great project because it gives young people the opportunity to come up with ideas and take an active role in improving activities and facilities in their comunity."

The £1 million had to be spent between April 2007 and March 2008 and so far more than £600,000 has been awarded to 60 groups.

Two panels of young people meet to consider requests for funding and decide who should be awarded the cash.

Craig Osmand, a member of the decision-making panel, said: "I find it interesting and enjoyable, especially when having to make tough decisions on applications that impact on real people's lives."

"It is particularly rewarding to have helped lots of groups."

More young people are needed to become panel members.

- For details about the Big Spend visit www.hertsdirect.org, call 01442 454067 or text 07786 118894.


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